Friday, January 7, 2011

Why Obamacare should be repealed

A new letter from National Right to Life urges members of Congress to vote to repeal the 2010 health care overhaul, the "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" (Obamacare).

From the letter:
As enacted, the PPACA contains multiple provisions authorizing federal subsidies for abortion, and additional provisions on which future abortion-expanding regulatory mandates may be based. Many of the abortion-subsidizing provisions of the legislation are detailed in an NRLC affidavit posted on our website here, and further documented in other materials posted here.

In addition, the PPACA contains multiple provisions that will, if fully implemented, result in government-imposed rationing of lifesaving medical care. Among the most dangerous:
  • The department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will be empowered to impose so-called "quality and efficiency" measures on health care providers, based on recommendations by the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which is directed to force private health care spending below the rate of medical inflation. In many cases treatment that a doctor and patient deem needed or advisable to save that patient's life or preserve or improve the patient's health but which runs afoul of the imposed standards will be denied, even if the patient wants to pay for it. 
  • The law empowers HHS to prevent older Americans from making up with their own funds for the $555 billion the law cuts from Medicare by refusing to permit senior citizens the choice of private-fee-for-service plans whose premiums are sufficient to provide unrationed care but which HHS, in its unlimited discretion, disallows. The Obama health care law could thus lead to elimination of the only way that seniors will have to escape rationing -- by limiting their right to spend their own money to save their own lives. 
  • The law instructs and authorizes state bureaucrats to limit the value of the insurance policies that Americans may purchase. Not only will the exchanges exclude policies from competing in an exchange when government authorities do not agree with their premiums, but the exchanges will even exclude insurers whose plans outside the exchange offer consumers the ability to reduce the danger of treatment denial by spending what those government authorities claim to be an "excessive or unjustified" amount. This will create a "chilling effect," deterring insurers who hope to compete within the exchanges from offering adequately funded plans even outside of them, so that consumers will find it increasingly difficult to obtain health insurance that offers adequate and unrationed health care.
Detailed information on these and other components that will result in rationing is available here.

To summarize: The law is so riddled with provisions that violate right-to-life principles that it cannot simply be patched. It must be repealed, and any replacement legislation must contain all necessary safeguards for the right to life of the most vulnerable members of the human family.